Spring is a Good Time to Go

I had planned on a Sunday post filled with flowers…. Here we are Monday.  Spring means life even if it also brings death. And in this case, my mother-in-law, Jean, aged 85 and almost two months, passed away just before midnight on Saturday – another COVID casualty.  I guess it was fitting for her to die on a Saturday; she did like to go to Church on Saturdays.  She went four-five times per week but loved the Saturday service best. Makes one wonder just why she needed it so much. I have my theories but I shall keep them to myself.

Mother’s Day 2015, first one without Mick

We had a strange relationship, Jean and I. She was not an easy woman to deal with. In one breath I was the best wife, mother, cook; and in the next, I was the bitch who had her locked up.  If she only knew it was me who pushed her son to go get her, to return her calls, to keep her updated on us.  Or that I did what I could to have her be able to stay in her apartment, even if just for a while.  Neither here nor there, now, is it?

She was not a loving mother to her only son during his childhood, though I think deep down she did love him, in her way – it was just a really tough kind of love.  Neither one of them forgave the other completely for past pains.  And they both had plenty.

She did love her grandchildren, even if she could never get them straight.  Austin was the easy one to remember because he died.  And she focused on death.  All. The. Time.  Conversations were always of the genre:  “Clara (or insert any name) died. Cancer/heart attack/insert malady.”  “Who’s Clara? (again, insert name never heard till now)”  “A friend.”  “So sorry to hear that.”

We only saw her once or twice per year; three, on special occasions.  Mother’s Day and Christmas Brunch, Mick would drive the 45 minutes to pick her up, bring her to our place or the restaurant, and, after the event, do the same trek.  We’d offer to take her out once and again and she always refused, preferring to come to our place.  Despite my being the “best cook and baker”, she didn’t enjoy food.

Her relationship with Mick was very complicated.  Mick had shared with me his version of his history and I tried to get her talk about hers. She didn’t divulge very much but got very defensive.  I came to the conclusion that both were pigheaded in their refusal to accept their part!  Still, when we take the time to see, she did the best she could with what she had and she was alone to do it.  And, when push came to shove, Mick was there for her (and then I was) and she was there for him (and for me after he died).  Even if it was by duty.

Mother’s Day brunch 2010

She was pretty pleased to be the mother of the groom.  This was definitely one of her happy and proud days.  Mick insisted on treating her to a shopping spree, make-up and hairstyling as she was not one to splurge on herself. At all. So it took some doing and a threat or two on his part for her to acquiesce.

September 14, 2002

It is hard to say how I feel as I wasn’t truly in a position to create a close relationship with Jean.  Her son kept her at arm’s length and I had to respect him.  He had his reasons, after all.  After Mick died, I kept up the annual pilgrimage to pick her up and bring her over for Mother’s Day until her fall in July 2017.  At that time, it was discovered she was in the beginning stages of Alzheimer’s and would not be abe to return to her home.  I spent a lot of time going back and forth doing what I know Mick would have done no matter how much he bitched about it. Because deep down, we do care.

Mother’s Day 2014 – last one with Mick

So my visits with Jean, with or without the boys, were every few months.  With each visit, it took longer for her to remember who I was and always asked why Mick wasn’t with me. To which I would reply because he was “working” – what would be the point of making her cry about her son’s death when in five minutes she would ask me again how he was and why wasn’t he there? And, of course, she never, ever, stopped asking to go home. The staff at Lev Tov said she asked every single day.  Drove them nuts with it.  She was a proud woman who had always taken care of herself and loathed her lack of independence.  She was not a happy woman but those in her circle loved her and thought her such a nice lady.

After a hair-styling at the residence

I hope she has finally found peace, wherever she is.

Weekend Writing Prompt #146 – Epoch

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend. How you use the prompt is up to you. Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like. Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise. If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in the comments.

Thank you, Sammi! So impossible to resist, I’ve done this in the airport!

I do not know why this post won’t allow comments! I can’t seem to fix the issue on the mobile version. If I figure it out… Fixed…

Name It

We give a name to

Each notable event

To mark the periods

In our life

I wonder what

Today’s epoch

Will be called

When I think back

Steps – Crimson’s Creative Challenge #40

Good Thursday night… for twenty minutes, anyway!  I wasn’t sure I would participate in Crispina‘s challenge this week and then, I thought I would just supply a “reply photo” but then found two and couldn’t decide on which one to use and decided to use both, then thought: “I can’t just plop two photos!” So I thought I’d write a little story but then nothing came to me and, driving home from work, a haiku came to mind. Only to promptly disappear as I parked my car.  Sigh.  As I played with my pictures, other words came to mind so. Well. This is what you get!

Where do these steps go?

In the middle of no where

How can I resist?

Do I see a light?

This is an invitation

I cannot resist

More steps up ahead

A neverending journey

Makes life worth living

Weekend Writing Prompt #107 – Spin

I cannot resist this challenge even when it is a “long” one of 92 words 😉 Thank you, Sammi, for offering up this weekly word challenge!

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend. How you use the prompt is up to you. Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like. Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise. If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in the comments.

Word Prompt

Spin

Challenge

As a child, she loved to spin.

Arms wide, head thrown back

Feet turning in one direction

As the surrounding scenery blurred

She did her best to remain upright

 

As a teen, she chose to spin

Going on amusement rides that spun her around

Dating guys who left her dizzy

A mix of confidence and uncertainty

Tried her best to remain upright

 

As an adult, she’d rather not spin

But life has other plans

Tossing challenges her way

Till she feels loss of control

Still, she does her best to remain upright

Weekend Writing Prompt #101 – Charlatan

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend.  How you use the prompt is up to you.  Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like.  Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise.  If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in the comments.  Thank you Sammi, for this challenge where I keep challenging myself!

Word Prompt

Charlatan

Challenge

First of fifteen
She’d not be swayed
None shall I have!
She vehemently said
Yet, at twenty-four
A fourth! No, oh dread!

Determined was she
To end this misfortune
Doctor could help
Illegal abortion
The place was so filthy
She recoiled in aversion

A charlatan is he
She turned to flee
Thank goodness
Because
My mother and me
Would never be!

Conversation With Myself – Crimson’s Creative Challenge #22

I’ve been mulling over Crispina’s photo for two days now.  We’ve had a few paths or gates so far – albeit all very different – and I didn’t want to find myself telling a different version of a previous story.  What to do?  I found myself having an internal dialogue, going over ideas.  Hey….there ya go.  Make that the story.  So I did.  Care to join in on the fun?  Just click here to find out all the rules and regs.  There are none!  Well, except going over 150 words.  That’s the only rule.  Not so tough, eh?

Conversation With Myself

Does that path up ahead look smooth to you?

No, why? Is it supposed to be?

I though it might be; at least somewhat.

Where’d you get that notion?

I figured I’d earned it by now.

Based on what, exactly?

My age, years worked, life experiences

And you figured by now, all the hard stuff would be done?

Pretty much

Kind of presumptuous, no?

You think? I just didn’t figure I’d be starting over so late in the game.

Life’s funny like that.  Just when you think you have it figured out—

Boom!  Here comes another rock, jutting out just enough to trip you

You know what they say, right?

Oh shut up! 

But it’s true!

What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger… Ugh.

You’re resilient.  You can handle it.

Well maybe I’d just like for things to ease up!

They will, in time.

When?

Soon enough.

I hate you.

 

 

Crimson’s Creative Challenge #15 – To Come Full Circle

I have been drawn in, once again, to Crispina’s CCC challenge.  First of all, because the sunflower is my favourite flower – even when she is spent and ready to be put to rest.  I didn’t want to focus on her death but could not avoid it.  And then, what the hell was I thinking?  I decided to try my hand at a double etheree (didn’t even know what that was before Willow introduced me to one a good while back).  And then, yesterday, Merril went and posted a beautiful one and somehow here I am trying my hand at writing crazy stuff that I know nothing about.  Call me crazy.

To Come Full Circle

Dead

Finished

Time is up

Served my purpose

Seeds and glory, gone

Sadly, I hang my head

I was beautiful, before

But now, I fear, am fading fast

The birds come no more, I am spent

My green once so bright has dulled to yellow

 

But wait!  I have lost sight of my purpose

I have fed nature’s smallest creatures

I have given, with all my love

Facing the sun, I spread joy

I replenish my stock

Letting some seeds fall

To plant themselves

Born again

To give

Life

 

(Word count:  89)